The boy from the streets of Madeira once overwhelmed Sir Alex Ferguson when Manchester United visited newly branded Estádio José Alvalade, home of Sporting Clube de Portugal in August 2003. The boy stood up and put up an audition worthy to be remembered for a long long time. It was the biggest of the biggest occasion of his career till then. He put up a show with such hunger and passion that just after the match Sir Alex Ferguson decided to sign him for Manchester United.
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Manchester United was defeated 3:1 and at the end of the post-match speech, Sir Alex said, "Oh, lads, and one final thing: They have a talented young winger. Look out for him, OK? He's strong and agile. He's quite good."
Sir Alex considered him to be "one of the most exciting young players" he had ever seen.
Cristiano Ronaldo Audition Aape #101 for Manchester United, is and always will be iconic.
“After about 15 minutes, you could just look down the bench and most of us, including Roy Keane and Ryan Giggs, were shaking our heads, with our mouths wide open, not quite believing what we were watching," Mark Lynch recalling his performance on that night.
The rest is history.
Ronaldo went on to score 118 goals during his six years with United, winning three Premier League titles, an FA Cup, two League Cups, the Champions League and the Club World Cup. He won everything there is to win for United. He won the Ballon d’Or in 2009 and bid an emotional departure from Old Trafford.
The later part of the saga saw him emerge as one of the greatest player of all time along with his eternal competitor Leo Messi. Ronaldo enjoyed his time at Real Madrid again winning everything there is to win.
The Portuguese superstar is currently gracing the ranks of Andrea Pirlo’s Juventus in Italy. He is currently under contract till 2022. But much to fan fiction and rumors, there are talks about him departing from Italy. Ronaldo said he wants to win the Champions League with Juventus, and he is yet to win one. But with time sadly he is not turning any younger. He will be turning 36 by next February. He is still the best player for Juventus but the rumors are coming hard and fast.
Reality or hoax?
There are talks about him looking for future destinations. PSG was one such team with the potential to afford Cristiano. They are considering offloading Neymar whose contract ends at the end of summer and might be looking for a swap deal of Neymar-Cristiano. With COVID-19 hitting clubs all across Europe financially, it has reportedly become difficult for Juve to afford Ronaldo even though he is the best performer for Juve and the highest goal scorer in 2020 across the top leagues in all Europe. Ronaldo earns in £540,000 a week - nearly FOUR times as much as the club's next-highest paid player, Matthijs de Ligt.
But for the fans what really got them exciting is Ronaldo’s possible return to Old Trafford to join the ranks of Ole Gunner Solskjaer. These are the transfer rumor that fans live for. The Legend, the Saga of Cristiano Ronaldo coming back to the place where it all began; will be quite something. Even the slightest possibility of CR7 ending his career in European Football at Old Trafford would be extremely emotional and iconic for the football fraternity to talk about. His time at Manchester United is still remembered fondly. When he returned to Manchester with Juventus and Real Madrid, the superstar was welcomed with the warmest regard. The legacy he left behind with the No. 7 shirt is unmatched till now. Many players came and went on their paths but the stories of that No. 7 jersey is yet to be replicated. Perhaps a return to Old Trafford would be a tale written in stars.
But Could Manchester United afford him? Even though Ole Gunnar Solskjaer might have declared he has no use for 'marquee' signings anymore at United, but exceptions are made when you're a Ballon d'Or winner and 5 times Champions league winning superstar.
It is almost not even worth worrying over possible financial costs because If a club wants to sign Ronaldo they will find a way to pay him. The commercial growth and marketing opportunities Ronaldo brings in unparalleled. Manchester United is no thin skin. They have the financial muscle to pull off such a sensational deal. As previously when Ronaldo was on the market after Real Madrid, United showed interest in signing him. The 35-year-old has already ‘completed’ English football once in his life. He is remembered as a ‘near-perfect’ character in United. He left with such a legacy that even after 11 years of his departure they still belives the prodigal son of Sir Alex will return to Old Trafford one day.
With Cristiano Ronaldo coming back to Manchester United, and rumors of Leo Messi joining Manchester City next summer, you can’t even anticipate the buzz these two will create for the next Manchester Derby. English Football could cash in like crazy and the rest of Europe would just watch and gasp by the show these two will put on at Etihad and Old Trafford. Even it sounds unreal but it is within the realistic vision of both the clubs if the situation arises. Because the clubs have the capacity to bring in the global icons of football.
How Ronaldo could turn the ship of Manchester United
Ronaldo could light up the ranks of ManU with the likes of Bruno Fernandes, Marcus Rashford, Greenwood, and Edinson Cavani.
They could line up in so many ways with Cristiano Ronaldo. The best way possible for him to link up there considering the current form of players will be-
Rashford – Ronaldo – Greenwood
Van De Beek – Bruno Fernandes – Mctominay
Tellas – Maguire – Williams- Wan Bissaka
Ronaldo back to Old Trafford will always be delicious transfer rumor. But no one could tell. We all have to wait till the next summer window. Because however how harsh it may sound but Ronaldo to United this winter window is not happening.